Monday, June 30, 2014

How to clear the scanner memory on a Ricoh Aficio MP series multifunction copier

On a Ricoh Aficio MP series copier, you can set the scanner option to store files in the copier's hard drive.  Eventually, the scanned files might take up too much memory and you may wish to delete them, or you might want to delete them for security reasons.  This article will show you how to delete the stored scanned files from your copier's memory, as well as clear the scanner journal and the recent scan destinations.

- To delete stored scanned files
Press the Scanner button to bring up the scan function screen.  On the screen, touch Select Stored File, toward the top.  Then select Manage/Delete File.

A list of your stored files will be displayed.  Select the file or files you want to delete, then select Delete File and confirm your choice.  If there are a lot of files stored, you won't be able to select them all at once, so you'll have to repeat the last couple of steps until all the files have been erased.

- To delete the scanner journal

The scanner journal stores a list of scans that you've made recently.  The actual file scanned is not saved, but the journal does track where you scanned to, when the scan was sent, and whether it was successful or not.  To clear this list, press the User Tools/Counter button, select Scanner Features and then Delete Scanner Journal.  (You may be prompted to confirm your choice.)

- To delete recent scan destinations

The copier also stores a list of recent scan destinations, so that you can select them again if you want to scan to the same place.  You can erase this list on the same screen where you can erase the scanner journal -- press User Tools/Counter, then select Scanner Features.  On this screen, select Delete Recent Destinations, and confirm your choice if prompted.

How to view the IP address for an HP LaserJet Pro 400 color MFP M475dn

You can easily view the IP address for your HP LaserJet Pro 400 color MFP M475dn printer without having to print out a configuration page or network page.  To see the IP address, simply press the Ethernet (network) button on the main screen (at the top).  The IP address will be displayed, along with the printer's host name and hardware (MAC) address.

How to Fix Your Computer Yourself

Computers are remarkable devices. At their best, they can do amazing things. But when they break down, they can make you want to pull your hair out. Here are some tips to try for common computer problems, before calling in a professional:

- Sluggishness

If your computer is running slowly -- taking a long time to open applications or switch between windows, for example -- there are many things you can do to try to speed it up. First, unclutter your desktop by removing old or unused shortcuts. (Deleting the shortcut does not delete the actual program.) Then run Disk Cleanup to remove unnecessary temporary files, and empty your recycle bin to free up some more disk space. (In Windows XP and Vista, you can access Disk Cleanup by right-clicking on your hard drive in My Computer or Computer and choosing Properties.)

Next, defragment your hard drive to better organize your files. Defragmenting will usually take a while (probably most of an hour) and you shouldn't use your computer while it's running, but if the hard drive hasn't been defragmented in a while, running the defragmenter can possibly result in a noticeable increase in system performance. To run the defragmenter in Vista, simply type "defrag" into the Windows search bar. In XP, it can be found under the System Tools folder (All Programs > Accessories > System Tools > Disk Defragmenter).

If your computer is still slower than you think it should be, you may have a virus or other malware -- run anti-virus and anti-spyware scans. (See the next section.)

- Virus or spyware

Viruses and other malicious programs (spyware, adware, or malware) can infect your computer and do nasty things. Sometimes you'll know when your computer is infected; other times you won't.

If you believe your computer is infected, run both an anti-virus and anti-spyware scan. Delete or quarantine any malicious files found, then reboot your computer and run the scans again. If the same files keep popping up, the virus has hidden itself in your computer's registry and it will keep reinstalling every time you remove it. If this is the case, have a professional clean your system.

You should have both an anti-virus and anti-spyware program installed on your computer. Most people have only an anti-virus program, which is good to have but will not keep out all unwanted programs. Several free anti-spyware programs can be found online, including Ad-Aware and Spybot.

- Device or memory error

Sometimes Windows will crash or freeze up because of an error. Usually when this happens, it will give you some indication of what caused the problem. If it's a device error and Windows tells you which device is causing the problem, you may have a faulty device, or it may simply be a software issue. Try reinstalling the device driver, or downloading a new driver from the manufacturer's website.

If the error is an application error, you need to figure out which application is to blame. Usually when you get application errors it's right after you've installed a new program. Uninstall your most recent program (through the Control Panel) and see if the error goes away. If it doesn't, you may be able to use System Restore to load previous settings that didn't cause that error.

Memory errors can sometimes be application errors as well. When a memory error occurs, Windows shows you the address in memory where the error took place. Write this address down - if the same address keeps popping up, you most likely have faulty RAM. Either replace your RAM sticks yourself or have a professional do it (usually only for a modest fee).

If the memory address constantly changes, you most likely have an application error. Follow the steps listed above for application errors.

- Audio or video problem

For an audio or video problem (blank screen, no sound, distorted sound, etc.) the problem might just be a loose cable. Shut the computer down, then disconnect and reconnect all of your audio or video cables - these are usually the monitor's data cable (going to the computer) and power cable (going to the outlet or surge protector) and wires for any audio devices, including speakers, headphones, microphones, or headsets.

If the problem doesn't go away, it may be a damaged or faulty device. For cheap devices like headphones, try replacing them to fix the problem. In rare cases, audio and video problems can be caused by intermittent electrical problems with the motherboard, for which you will probably want a professional's help.

- Network connection problems

Network issues are usually simple settings adjustments, but searching through the settings to find the right one can be a real bear. It's often easier to pay someone else to do it. But first, you might want to try reconnecting all of your networking cables - Ethernet or coaxial cables, and any cables leading to or from your router, switch, or hub. Also, if you are running a home network, make sure all of your computers are in the same workgroup and make sure they all have File and Printer Sharing enabled.

For an issue scanning from a dedicated scanner or multi-function printer, check your firewall to be sure it's not blocking the scanning attempt. If you can print to the device (or ping it, or otherwise interact with it from your computer) but you can't receive scans from it, it's likely that some program is blocking the transmission. If it's not your firewall, it may be a security program, or a hardware device, such as your router.

If you can connect to other devices on your home network, but can't connect to anything outside your network, try rebooting your router. It will likely be either a problem with the router itself, or with your Internet Service Provider (ISP).

If you've tried the solutions listed above and haven't been able to resolve the problem, it may be time to call in a professional. Find a person or company with a good reputation and reasonable rates, and if you have to leave your computer with them, make sure you know up front how long the repairs will take.

(Originally posted on Helium.com, December 2009, updated with new information)

Thursday, June 26, 2014

How to enable remote access for a NetGear WGR614 wireless router

Remote access provides you with the ability to monitor and configure your router's settings from any computer with Internet access.  Enabling remote access opens your network up to possible security threats, but for users who require access to their router's settings when they are away from the network (such as network technicians) it allows a greater degree of control.

To enable remote access on a NetGear WGR614 wireless router, open up a web browser and type the router's IP address into the address bar.  (By default, the IP address is 192.168.1.1.  If you don't know the IP address, this article will help you find it.)  If asked to log in, enter the user name and password set up for the router.  If these have never been changed, the default values are "admin" for the user name and "password" for the password.  If you are going to enable remote access, it's a good idea to change the user name and password from the defaults, if you haven't done so already.

When the NetGear Smart Wizard loads, scroll down on the sidebar until you see the Advanced section, and beneath that heading, click on Remote Management.  The Remote Management screen will appear.

Check the box next to Turn Remote Management On to enable remote access.  The IP address that appears below this box is the address and port number you'll use to access the router remotely -- write this address down somewhere safe.  You can change the port number if you want to, but unless you have a good reason to, you should leave it set to 8080.

Now you have to choose who will have remote access to the router.  The three options (under Allow Remote Access By) are:

• Only the computer that you are currently using
• A specific range of IP addresses
• Anyone with Internet access

The first option is the most secure, but it's also the least flexible.  If you don't know what IP address or computer you'll be logging in to the router from, the third option is probably the best one.

Once you've set everything up the way you want it, click the Apply button below the settings.  It may take a minute for the router to reconfigure itself, during which time any computers connected to the router will be temporarily disconnected.  As soon as the new settings take effect, all connections will be restored.

(Originally published on Helium.com, February 2011)

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

How to manually set the IP address for an HP LaserJet 600 M601 / M602 / M603

To set up a static IP address for a LaserJet Enterprise 600 M601, M602, or M603 printer, or to change the current static IP address, follow these steps:

- With the printer on and ready, press the OK button to bring up the menu
- Scroll down to Administration
- Press OK
- Scroll down to Network Settings
- Press OK
- Scroll down to JETDIRECT MENU
- Press OK
- Scroll down to TCP/IP
- Pres OK
- Scroll down to IPV4 SETTINGS
- Press OK
-  CONFIG METHOD will be displayed; press OK to select it
- Scroll down to MANUAL
- Press OK
- Scroll down to MANUAL SETTINGS
- Press OK
- IP ADDRESS will be displayed; press OK to select it
- Using the number keys, input each portion (octet) of the IP address, then press OK to go to the next octet
- Scroll down to SUBNET MASK
- Using the number keys, input each portion (octet) of the subnet mask, then press OK to go to the next octet
- Scroll down to DEFAULT GATEWAY
- Using the number keys, input each portion (octet) of the gateway IP address, then press OK to go to the next octet
- Press the Home button to exit out of the menu

You can also set a static IP address from the printer's embedded web server, using your computer and a web browser.  In order to change the IP address that way, the printer must already have an IP address assigned (either manually or through DHCP).

How to find the MAC address of a device

A MAC address is a permanent identifier that is burned into network interface cards (NICs) used in computers as well as other network-connectable devices such as printers, routers, television set-top boxes, and video game systems. Unlike an IP address, a MAC address does not change, and it's a way for devices to identify each other on a network.

MAC address filtering is a relatively strong security measure you can take for your home or office network. By enabling MAC address filtering, any device whose MAC address does not match a MAC address on the list that you specify won't be able to access your network. MAC address filtering is especially useful for wireless networks.

In order to use MAC address filtering, you'll need to know the MAC addresses of all the devices that you want to be able to connect to your network. A MAC address consists of six groups of two characters, and each group is separated by either a colon (:) or a hyphen (-).  The characters can be numerals (from 0 to 9) or letters (from A to F).

For a networked printer or copier, you can typically find the MAC address by printing out a configuration page. On some printers it may be called something different, like an information page or a network settings page.  This page should list all of the device's network configuration settings, including the MAC address. The MAC address may be called physical address, Ethernet address, hardware address, or something else, but you can recognize it by looking for the six two-character sets separated by a colon or hyphen.  (If you're not sure how to print a configuration page from your copier or printer, you can find instructions for many different brands and models here:  http://configpages.blogspot.com/)

Smart phones have MAC addresses as well, but they can be trickier to find.  On an iPhone, the MAC address is labeled as the WiFi Address, and on other smart phones it may be called something similar. Just like with printers, you can recognize the MAC address by its unique format. Some BlackBerries will display the MAC address on the phone's Status screen (under Options); on others it can be found under Manage Connections.

If a device is already connected to your local network, you may be able to find its MAC address by using your router's web interface. Most routers allow you to access their settings by typing the router's IP address (often 192.168.1.1 for a home network) into your web browser and logging in with your username and password. Depending on your router's software, you might be able to view a list of all devices connected to your network, along with each device's MAC address.

If you're running Windows Vista or Windows 7, you can find the MAC address of any device on your network by using the Network Map. In the Network and Sharing Center, click Network Map or View Full Map in the upper right corner, and a visual representation of your network will be shown.  Just hover over any device listed, and you should see it's MAC address.

(Originally published on Helium.com, August 2010)

Monday, June 23, 2014

How to reserve an IP address on a NetGear WGR614 wireless router

If your network uses a NetGear WGR614 wireless router, you can monitor and modify the router's settings through NetGear's SmartWizard Router Manager software.  There are many things you can do from the Router Manager.  This article will guide you through setting up a reserved IP address for a specific device on your network.

The Router Manager is accessed through a web browser, so open up a new browser window (Firefox, Internet Explorer, or any other web browser you prefer) and in the address bar at the top, type in your router's IP address.  (This is also your gateway IP address.)  For most small office and home networks, the router's IP address is probably the default address used when it was set up: 192.168.1.1.  If that IP address doesn't work and you don't know what the router's IP address is, this article can help you find it:

- How to find the IP address of a router

If you have a username and password set up for your router, you'll be prompted to enter them now.  If you've never changed these settings, then you can use the default credentials: admin for the username, and password for the password.  Once you've entered the correct information, you'll be logged into the Router Manager.

The Router Manager is broken up into three panes.  In the purple sidebar on the left side of the page, scroll down until you see the Advanced heading.  Under this heading, click on LAN Setup.  The LAN Setup page will load in the center pane of your browser.

Scroll down to the bottom of this pane, where you'll see a heading labeled Address Reservation.  There will be a table below the heading that shows any current IP address reservations - if you've never used this function before, that table will be empty.  Below the table, click the gray Add button.  (You may be prompted to enter your password again.)

The Address Reservation screen will load in the center pane, and you'll see a list of any devices (other than the router itself) currently connected to your network.  You can select any of these devices if the one you want to set up a reserved address for is on this list; otherwise you'll have to enter the device's information in the fields below the list.  If you choose a device from the list, the other fields will be populated with the information contained for that entry, so you won't have to enter it in yourself.

In the first field (IP Address) enter the IP address you want to reserve.  (Make sure this address is not already in use.)  Then fill in the next two fields with the device's information (MAC Address and Device Name).  If you're not sure how to find your device's MAC address, this article will help you find it:

- How to find the MAC address of a device

Once you have entered all of the information, click the Add button to set up the reservation.  If you want to clear out all of the fields and start over, click Refresh, or if you want to exit out without adding the reservation, click Cancel.

You should now see your reserved IP address on the Address Reservation table.  You can edit or delete this entry (or add another reserved address) at any time by using the buttons below the table.  When you are finished making changes, click the Apply button at the bottom of that pane to save your changes.

(Originally published on Helium.com in slightly different form, December 2010)

Sunday, June 22, 2014

How to Find the IP Address of a Router

Almost every device connected to a network uses IP addressing as identification.  Each device will have its own unique IP address, and there are several different ways to locate that address.  On a home network or small office network, the router is usually the device in charge of handing out IP addresses, and it will often have an IP address of 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.0.1.  (For Comcast routers, the default IP address might be 10.0.0.1.)

If you have never changed your router's IP address, it should still be using its default IP address.  A list of default IP addresses for routers can be found here:

- Default IP addresses for routers and other network devices

If your router's IP address has ever been changed, that list won't help.  Below are the easiest ways to find your router's IP address:

Network Map


If your computer is running Windows Vista or newer, you can easily locate your router's IP address on the Network Map.  To access the Network Map, click on Network on the Start menu and then select Network and Sharing Center.  From there, click the View full map link in the upper right corner.


On the map, hover over the icon for your router and you should see its name and IP address displayed.


IPCONFIG


From the command prompt, you can run the IPCONFIG command to find your router's IP address.  You can get to the command prompt in Windows XP, Vista, or 7 by clicking Run on the Start menu and typing cmd and then pressing <ENTER>.  (In Vista or 7, you can also type cmd directly into the Search bar.)


At the command prompt, type ipconfig /all to list your system's current network settings.  As long as you are currently connected to a network, you should see your computer's IP address, your subnet mask, and your default gateway's IP address.  (You may have to scroll back up to find it if it's a long list.)  If your router is how you connect to the Internet, then it is most likely your default gateway, so the IP address listed there will belong to your router.


If you have more than one network interface card (NIC) or network adapter installed in your computer, you'll see the settings for each device, so make sure you are looking at the right information.  Most laptops have a wireless NIC as well as a wired Ethernet NIC; typically only one is connected at a time, but make sure you are checking the correct adapter's settings.


• In Chrome OS

If you are using a Chromebook or other device running the Chrome operating system, you can quickly find your router's IP address through the network settings.  Click on the system notification bar in the lower right corner (where it shows the time, network signal strength, and battery status) and from the menu that appears, select Connected to (your network).  Click on the network name at the top of the box, then select the Network tab.  Your router's IP address will be displayed next to "Gateway."

Your router's main function is to connect two networks together; in most cases, this involves connecting your home network to the Internet through your Internet service provider (ISP).  Any router has at least two IP addresses, one on each network that it works with.  So while your router has the private IP address that you discovered in the steps above, it also has a public IP address that it uses for communicating with computers across the Internet.


This public IP address is handed out by your ISP, and every computer on your home network will use this same address when connected to the Internet.  You can easily find your router's public IP address by going to a website such as WhatIsMyIPAddress.com or WhatIsMyIP.com.  A router's public IP address generally changes every time you get online, or whenever the connection is lost or the router is reset.


(Originally published in shorter form on Helium.com, August 2010)

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Computer review: HP Pavilion a450n desktop computer

I bought my HP Pavilion a450n desktop computer in the spring of 2004, soon after it first came out. I overpaid heavily for it, because I didn't know any better at the time, but it came well-stocked with Microsoft Office, an HP all-in-one printer, and a decent monitor. It's been a great computer, and I still use it today, over 10 years later.

The a450n might be a little slow by today's standards, but it still runs fast and handles multi-tasking easily. It came pre-installed with Windows XP, a bunch of HP monitoring and diagnostic tools, and HP's Recovery Software Suite. That recovery software (pre-loaded so you only have to hit a button on startup to run it) has saved my computer twice now from being ravaged by viruses. The software seamlessly (and quickly) restores the computer's settings to what they were at the date of setup, including drivers and installed programs. It works rather like Windows' System Restore, but more reliably. Unfortunately this means you must reinstall any third-party programs (like Microsoft Office), updated drivers, and Windows service packs, but this is a small price to pay to have your computer back.

I have had no issues with hardware since buying this computer. It features a Pentium 4 3.0 GHz CPU, 150 GB hard drive (with 5.5 GB partitioned off for the recovery software), 512 MB RAM, a CD writer/DVD writer drive as well as a CD reader drive, and a generic-looking but highly functional keyboard.

Other than the two virus infections and a problem with a McAfee security program, my a450n has had no problems at all until recently.  
It started having some hard drive issues over the past few months, which I think is understandable, considering that the hard drive is a decade old, and the two CD-ROM drives don't always work.  (They worked fine for the first seven or eight years, which is longer than most people would probably own the computer.)

Over the years, I upgraded the monitor, keyboard, mouse, printer, and RAM (from the 512 MB it came with to 1 GB) but the computer itself is still chugging along robustly. I use the HP keyboard for my second computer now, and -- other than a few stains -- it looks and acts the same as it did when it was brand new.

The computer is designed in a tower layout. The rear of the computer contains more ports than I've needed so far, and the front contains additional ports which have come in handy because of their easier accessibility - multiple USB ports, three different audio jacks, an SD port, a FireWire port (which I've never used) and even a 3.5" floppy drive.

The HP Customer Care website is very user-friendly -- you can find product information, updated drivers, instructions on upgrading components, and information on ordering extra recovery CDs. HP is a highly customer-oriented company, and they even offer computer users free online classes on a variety of subjects.

HP is a well-respected name in computer technology, and with the Pavilion a450n, they proved they deserve it.


(Originally published on Helium.com, July 2009)

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Computer review: Acer C720 Chromebook

I'd been hanging on to my Windows XP laptop for far too long.  The hard drive was finally starting to die, and with XP support going by the wayside, it was time to bite the bullet and purchase a new laptop.  But I didn't have a lot of money to spend, so my options were limited to lower-end Windows 7 or 8 laptops or refurbished laptops.  Or so I thought.

While browsing through laptops on Amazon.com, I came across a few Chromebooks.  I'd heard of Chromebooks before, when they first came out, and thought it was a neat idea but had never used one.  I'd never really considered buying one, until I saw the Acer C720 Chromebook.  The C720 caught my attention right away.

The Acer C720 has impressive features, especially for a laptop that's under $300.  It comes with a wireless adapter that can handle up to Wireless-N speeds, an anti-glare screen, a solid state (SSD) hard drive, an HDMI port, built-in Bluetooth, a webcam, and the coup de grace for me -- a battery that lasts up to 8.5 hours.

I've never had a laptop with a battery that lasted much over an hour, so 8.5 hours immediately got my attention.  After shopping around a little bit more, I made my decision and bought the C720 for $199.

I've had this laptop for about eight months or so now, and I am still very much impressed with it.  It's not everything I thought it would be, but it's still pretty darned good.  The battery did indeed last 8.5 hours -- until I charged it the first time, and since then I've been getting from about 5 to 8 hours out of it in between charges.  It's not the 8.5 hours promised, but even 5 hours is still incredible and I have no complaints about that.  It's a nice feeling when you see the battery meter showing red for critical battery life, and when you look at the details you see that you still have 43 minutes left.

For such a small laptop, it's very durable.  It fell from about five feet onto a hard tile floor and no parts were damaged.  On my old Gateway laptop, a plastic corner chipped off just from normal use, and yet this Chromebook suffered no damage at all after smashing into the floor.

Being a Chromebook, the C720 uses the Chrome OS rather than the more traditional Windows, Mac OS, or Linux operating systems.  Chrome OS is geared more toward getting online (and playing and working there) than other systems.  For the most part, everything runs through the Chrome web browser.

If you're not used to Chrome OS (like me) this shift can take some getting used to.  But it is a well-designed operating system, and it certainly has less glitches than Windows.  In the month I've been using the C720, it has only hung up once, requiring a reboot.  My old Windows laptop, even before it started having hard drive problems, was having a good week if it only crashed once.

The file management system in Chrome is vastly different from the Windows file system.  There is no real "desktop" to speak of, for example, but there is a task bar at the bottom of the screen.  A Chromebook isn't designed for working on files stored locally, so getting around on the hard drive can be a little cumbersome -- definitely not as user-friendly as it is in Windows.  But Chrome OS gives you the ability to work off of documents and files that you store on Google Drive, in the cloud -- and the C720 comes with two years of free storage space on Google Drive, up to 100GB.

The C720 is small, which is great for portability.  If you're used to a bigger laptop, the C720 will be quite an adjustment.  The screen is only 11.6" and there is no number keypad.  I much prefer a bigger screen, but I've gotten used to the smaller screen since I've been using it.  It is a high-quality screen -- it's viewable from many angles, and it does a good job of eliminating glare.

One of the nicer features of Chrome OS is how lightweight and simple the operating system is.  It doesn't require a lot of system resources, so the processor and RAM can devote themselves to running your applications.  When you turn the C720 on, from being completely off, it's booted up in a matter of seconds.  Having been a Windows user for years, I immediately scoffed at that claim, but it is completely true.  Less than 10 seconds from opening the C720's lid, I can be online and working.

Chrome OS does a lot behind the scenes.  It automatically downloads updates, which are applied the next time you reboot, and it controls the anti-virus and anti-malware features on its own.  You can use Google Docs to open many different kinds of files.

As far as hardware is concerned, the C720 is heavily-loaded for a $199 price tag.  It has a 16GB SSD, 2GB of DDR3L SDRAM, an Intel Celeron 2955U processor (which is more than adequate for what Chrome OS needs), Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, a webcam, an HDMI port, two USB ports, an SD card slot, and two internal speakers.

Some things you won't find on the C720 that you might miss include a CD/DVD drive, multiple USB 2.0 ports, and some of the keys that you may have grown accustomed to on a Windows keyboard.  There is no Windows key (obviously) but there is also no Page Up, Page Down, Print Screen, Home, End, or Delete keys.  However, there are some new keys, including Refresh, two brightness keys, volume keys, a full-screen key, and more.  It takes some getting used to, but you can get by without Page Up and Page Down -- holding down the Alt key while using the up or down arrows will do the same thing.

The keys on the keyboard are flatter than on a traditional laptop keyboard.  The lack of texture makes typing by feel a little harder (until you get used to it) but it also means the keys don't pop off like they sometimes do on other laptops.

If you do a lot of printing, that may be one area of concern with upgrading to a Chromebook.  The Chromebook doesn't use print drivers like a Windows or Mac computer would use -- instead you have to use Google's Cloud Print capability (or another app) to manage printing.  For some older printers, you may only be able to print to them from the C720 "through" another computer.  Setting up Cloud Print can be interesting if you've never done it before, but it isn't bad once you get familiar with it.

The C720 uses USB devices just like a Windows PC does.  In fact, I've noticed that the C720 recognizes my USB mouse a lot quicker than my Windows laptop ever did.  With my Windows laptop, it used to take almost 10 seconds (sometimes more) before the computer recognized the mouse.  The C720 recognizes it within just a second or two.

If you're used to Microsoft Office programs, Google Docs is a little different.  It's a nice word processing program, but sometimes when you copy text from Google Docs to a web page in Chrome, some of the formatting is lost.  Bold text doesn't copy over in bold, for example, and sometimes text will copy as double-spaced, even if it wasn't double-spaced originally.  Also, Chrome OS doesn't come with a native text editor like Notepad.  (Google Docs can open and read .TXT files, but it can't edit them.)

All in all, I am very happy with the C720 and would absolutely recommend it.  For the money I spent, it is an amazing buy -- the battery life alone is worth it.  Check it out for yourself -- the C720 listing on Amazon gives a lot of description about what you get with this Chromebook.  Even against other Chromebooks the C720 compares favorably.  It is less expensive than almost all Chromebooks listed on Amazon -- even some of the used ones.